The Architectural Uncanny
‘The condition of a sense of familiarity and estrangement from one’s own home’.
In a global age of increasing uncertainty and economic instability, it has brought into focus the transient nature of our urban experience and the sometimes fragile foundations upon which our homes rest. As a result a type of ‘cultural nomadism’ was born.
The catalyst for the current group of paintings came in a form of an old wooden desktop loom passed onto me from a friend. The history and associated meanings of domestic life and the way we weave the very fabric of our own lives, permeated the small wooden loom. This very humble object began to raise questions of the psychological and physical associations connected to the ideas and meaning of ‘home’.
As a result the work developed an architectural vocabulary. The paintings themselves function as architectural sketches as a means of planning and imagining new built environments. Combining domestic objects that contain intimate meaning with architectural forms and playing with scale and proportion, new amorphous structures are created, invoking a sense of movement and change. Creating new perceptions normally associated with objects and things that are familiar offers the opportunity of a new set of social relationships connected to time and space, dreams and memory, language and signs.
Presenting these forms within an imaginative or surrealist space, the structures and objects take on a new level of meaning by their morphological treatment. As a result a new level of reality is created that moves away from the simple feeling of fantasy, allowing the viewer to actively participate within the space and discover new meanings in things that are normally familiar to us in our everyday lives.
Stephen Nova 2013